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Matchbox Projects

Photos from my Gel Transfer project




Gel Transfer Project

idea to try some printing at home. Saw lots of beautiful rusted things, and thought a print on metal would be fun to try.

I was inspired by this online <a href=” “>tutorial I bought some copper sheet and gel medium from the local craft store.

2. I used software on my home computer to make a reversed copy of my image. Although the tutorial said the photocopy must be from a laser copier, I was impatient and my first try was with an ink jet copy from my home printer. Fail! It was a bit punishing as I had to wait for 24 hours to ensure the solution dried. My following attempts were from prints on a laser printer. As per tutorial, regular copy paper was used, not photo paper.

3. I cut some copper aluminium sheeting and applied gel medium to the surface. The copied image was then placed face down and adhered to the sheet.

4. Left for 24 hours to dry thoroughly, then a dampened sponge applied to the surface and the paper peeled gently using fingers to rub the surface. This process needed to be redone a handful of times to reveal the image.

5. After several attempts with the copper sheeting, I then tried the same technique using an artist canvas for my surface.

Result: The results on the copper sheeting weren’t great. Not enough image and background. The canvas produced a far better result, but still this medium feels too delicate. I was continually worried I would scratch and remove all layers when I was doing the peeling. This did in fact happen a few times. For the result I didn’t feel the effort was worth it. I put a layer of gel medium over the top of the image after I’d completed removing the layers. The result is ‘rustic’, scratchy and dusty looking.
Next time if I want to have a similar look I’ll just do some decoupage and lacquer over the top, rather than a transfer.


Aluminum copper sheet roll 38 gauge $19.99

$1.99 foam brush,

Matissse $15.99 gloss finish gel medium 250gm, 

Artist’s Canvas  $3.99


Selling Dreams

Saw another exhibition over the weekend, Selling Dreams: 100 Years of Fashion. I enjoyed it all, particularly 1920s to 50s images, in monochrome and surrealism inclined. Fashion photography is wonderful for its storytelling  🙂

New Project

I spent last weekend taking photos of rusty things and got the idea that printing one of the images onto metal could look effective. I called the art store and they have a product that will suit my project. The gel medium they supply comes in different consistencies depending on the effect I want. I’ll also take a trip to the hardware store for some sheet metal. If I can get the project done by beginning of November I’ll give it to my cousin for his birthday 🙂

Photomosaic Project



Bill Gates mosaic

I found this photo mosaic online (image credit and tutorial): ) made up of logos associated with Bill Gates. The  post included instructions online and it gave me an idea for a another weekend project.

Equipment/items used:
DSLR Camera, computer with internet access, home colour inkjet printer, cotton fabric to print my image on, iron
Other items purchased for this project: Canon T-shirt A4 transfer sheets ($27.95) Picture frame $7

Total amount spent = $34.95

The Process:
  • I downloaded and used Andreamosaic program
  • I loaded 104 images and set my preferences (eg. Rectangular tiles, 300 dpi)
  • I selected one photograph to be the main image, and the photomosaic was generated within a couple of minutes
  • Ironed A4 transfer sheet to the back of a piece of plain white cotton fabric to stiffen the fabric and enable it to go through my printer
  • Connected computer to printer and printed the saved mosaic file onto the A4 fabric sheet
  • Allowed fabric to cool down for 10 mins, Cut the fabric down to a4 size
  •  NB. Kept the transfer backing on the back of fabric sheet, mounted in frame with foam insert
Will share the results in next post 🙂

Pinhole Experiment

I’ve been wanting to do some pinhole photography for a while now. I had not used my cardboard camera as I haven’t yet purchased a 12 exposure roll of film. I found out that pinhole photography techniques can be used on a DSLR, so I gave it a go on the weekend.

I used a homemade cardboard pinhole lens taped to my DLSR.  It look about 5 minutes to make and mount the lens. I was surprised the camera was able to accept my lens and give me an image through the viewfinder and a meter reading. I was able to change ISO, WB and shutter speed settings but not aperture.

For this experiment I used a needle to punch a small pinhole in the cardboard. In my next experiment I’ll make a pinhole on a plastic cap and see if it produces a more crisp image. I’m looking forward to do more.  I had fun and enjoyed getting instant results!



Jeff Wall

Last week I had a good opportunity to gain more understanding of postmodernist photography. I visited the MCA and saw the exhibition of contemporary Canadian photographer Jeff Wall. Many of the images were displayed as large scale lightboxes, said to be inspired by bus shelter advertising.

His photography seems journalistic at a first glance, but after reading more about this artist I learned images such as The  Destroyed Room were staged realities.

I enjoy this photographer’s work as I find it  rich in detail and content. Check out the exhibition here 🙂


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